London, Glasgow, Fort William
Following an early alarm, I take the underground to Kings Cross, a train for six hours to Glasgow and then hire a car (from the ridiculously friendly staff at Enterprise) for the final three hour stretch to Fort William. Despite a police crash investigation which delays the journey for around half an hour, it’s a relatively pain-free journey to the UK’s capital of outdoor activities. The weather is outstanding, so it’s particularly pleasant to drive through the beautiful highlands and along Glen Coe.
It’s a four-day trip to Scotland with Susanne, to learn some mountaineering skills and get a bit of practice ahead of this year’s main climbing holiday in July. Having bought a few climbing tools, I’m keen to figure out how they work!
Fort William is much smaller than I expected, but it sits on the loch quite perfectly, especially as the sun sets over the mountains in the west. There are plenty of trekkers wandering around, but there are also a huge number of people on their way to the local pubs. For such a small and remote place, it seems to have quite a drinking culture. That said, with the choice of whiskies they have here, it’s not entirely surprising! An indian meal (not great) and an early night sets me up for tomorrow’s adventures.